Advent Study: Immanuel

The Story of God with Us from Genesis to Revelation

If you could summarize the whole Bible in a word, what would you say?

Jesus? Hope? Shalom? Love? Grace? Redemption? Sacrifice? Life?

All true answers and aspects of the story told in Scripture, but I think there is one word that captures the whole picture. One word to describe the main theme of the story:


God with Us

The story of how we were with God in the garden. How we lost this gift of God’s presence to sin and rebellion. How God, in His mercy, made a way for us to be with Him again.

This is not a story of God planning to dwell with His people in Eden and God’s plan failing. God was not surprised when Adam and Eve ate the fruit, just as He was not surprised when people could not follow the Law of Moses. Jesus taking on flesh in his birth and dying on the cross was not Plan B. This sovereign plan was written before the beginning of time.

“…the Lamb who was slaughtered before the world was made” (Revelation 13:8)

The way the story unfolds was always the plan. The cross was always the plan. A great crescendo in the middle of a song written in eternity past. A melody that begins in a garden and ends in a city where God dwells with His creation forever. 


God with Us

This Christmas season, we look back, all the way to the Garden, in order to look forward to the City.

We will think upon God walking with man in the garden, in the first Century and in the New Jerusalem.

We will reflect on the time of waiting for Christ’s first coming as we wait now for His second.

We will consider how Jesus both was God with us and the way for us to be with God again.

Let us look at the story of the Bible anew and see how it is the story of Immanuel. God with us.